Lee Camp on his Sunderland form and the final weeks of the relegation fight

Lee Camp. Picture by Frank Reid
Lee Camp. Picture by Frank Reid
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Lee Camp admits that he has been disappointed with his Sunderland performances, but hopes there are still one or two twists left in the relegation battle.

Camp was at fault for Reading’s opening goaliin last weekend’s 2-2 draw and the goalkeeping position has been a problem for the Black Cats all season.

The 33-year-old was brought in on deadline day in January after a prolonged spell out the game with injury and hopes to reward Sunderland boss Chris Coleman’s faith with some big performances in the final three games of the campaign.

He said: “I needed to get out and play some games and end the chapter of my injury.

“I’m not stupid, I know some of my performances haven’t been great and I’ve had to ride that wave after not playing for a while.

“I understand the criticism and that’s fine – that’s part and parcel of the job. But I’m pleased I’ve done it.

“It’s not every day you get an opportunity to play for a football club like Sunderland.

“A year ago I was coming to the end of the season out of contract and not in a great physical condition with my knee.

“I’m lucky I got a move to Cardiff, then the opportunity to play for Sunderland.

“I consider myself very fortunate and I don’t regret coming here because it doesn’t come every day.

“I feel as if I’m starting to build a bit of momentum and I’m finding my sea legs under me, which was always going to take time.

“I came out of the side and Jason’s had an opportunity but since the manager’s put me back in he’s stuck with me, which I’m grateful for.

“But the season is what it is. I can’t control that.

“Hopefully I can have a positive effect on the side in the coming weeks, whatever that may be.

“The bigger game is keeping the club in the Championship.

“It’s small details, that’s the frustrating thing.

“It’s the shot coming on or not quite defending a set play or even not getting a second goal, not getting out of sight at Reading.

“But this is the precarious situation we’re in – it’s such a tightrope, the pressure’s always on.

“It’s been unfortunate, but there’s still some fight in us yet and there could still be one or two twists and turns to go.

“Hopefully, now Wolves have been promoted, that could work in our favour when they have to come here (on May 6).

“Hopefully, if Cardiff win their game in hand, Fulham might have eyes elsewhere too (on April 27).

“If we achieve nine points and don’t stay up, I think we’ll be able to consider ourselves very, very unfortunate.”

Camp was attending a Foundation of Light coaching session and says that the club had much to be proud of in its community work.

He said: “I’ve not been here long, but I’ve been to a few events and I’ve seen how well organised everything is.

“From the outside, I’ve always seen the North East as such a hotbed for football, and, since I’ve been here, what I’ve really noticed is that everyone is a Sunderland fan.

“Everyone around here is so passionate about the club, so whenever you come to these things, putting something back into the community is so important because the football club is the be all and end all for the city and everything.

“It’s very easy when the team is doing well and everything is going well, you ride that wave.

“It’s obviously been disappointing on the pitch, and the club is in a position that no one wants it to be in, but I still think you have to continue with the things you do.

“You still have to try to be a positive influence on the community, and support the Foundation the best you can.

“Ultimately, for the children that are here, they just want to have a day at school and do what they do.

“Hopefully, things will improve on the pitch, but this will always be a consistent thing that happens.”